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Muslim Migration In & Out of Africa. African Studies Program Summer Institute 2012. Senegalese Muslims in Harlem, NY August 2005. Muslim Migration In & Out of Africa. Beth Buggenhagen Assistant Professor of Anthropology

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muslim migration in out of africa

Muslim Migration In & Out of Africa

African Studies Program Summer Institute 2012

Senegalese Muslims in Harlem, NY August 2005

muslim migration in out of africa1
Muslim Migration In & Out of Africa
  • Beth Buggenhagen
  • Assistant Professor of Anthropology
  • Where you can contact me with futher questions: [email protected]
  • Fieldwork in Senegal and US

Dakar, Senegal Dec. 2010


Web resources for teaching Islam

  • Frontline, “Muslims” at
  • Michigan State
muslim migration in the recent past
Muslim Migration in the Recent Past
  • Immigrants were first welcomed into France after WWII to address a labor shortage, many of these immigrants had been conscripts and sailors during the period of the war
  • 1970s the French economy, like the American economy, suffered a recession and immigrants became competitors for low skilled low paying jobs
  • Itinerant single male immigrant workers became permanent immigrant families, esp. after 1974 under the family reunification act  
  • Far right played on insecurity and racism,
  • 1980s: resentment over cultural differences, fear of suburban violence, and international terrorism
  • Many West African Muslims come to U.S. from France
muslim migration today
Muslim Migration Today
  • If a defining feature of migration in and out of Africa is its circular nature, then how do we understand processes of assimilation and integration in receiving countries?
  • Rather than settling permanently in foreign countries, many Africans remain tied to their home countries.
  • Some migrants are refugees of war, such as people from Libya, Somalia, Liberia, Sierra Leone, Congo (DRC).
  • Others are economic refugees, such as people from Senegal, Mali, Niger.
  • What is the impact of global sojourns on social and moral orders at home?
  • How does the political economy of migration and the global War on Terror affect people around the world?
muslim migration and globalization
Muslim Migration and Globalization
  • West African communities have a long tradition of migration and Islamic cosmopolitanism
  • Muslims in West Africa have always been tied to long distance networks.
  • The question of globalization here then perhaps is one of directionalities and temporalities
muslim migration and globalization1
Muslim Migration and Globalization
  • Think about relations, processes, paths, networks that operate beyond the level and purview of the nation-state
    • not as undermining the state,
  • But as the spaces in which the state is constituted, that is way in which state kind of steps back from these processes and then profits from them
  • Or even ways in which the traders made a profit by being able to cross boundaries, evade regulation,
muslim migration and african states
Muslim Migration and African States
  • Focus on global circuits rather than nation-state, usual way of looking at globalization as weakening of the state
  • How traders switch in an out of the law
  • When official structures collapse, people turn to unofficial activities
  • In other cases, states rely on revenue from overseas remittances
muslim migration and the west
Muslim Migration and the West
  • How does a religious minority fit within a secular nation?
  • Islam and a universal and global religion
  • Versus French republican ideology
  • Or U.S. notions of integration
additional resources
Additional Resources

Recent Ethnographies of African Migration

  • Carter, Donald Martin. 2010. Navigating the African Diaspora. Minnesota University Press.
  • Kane, Ousmane. 2011. The Homeland is the Arena. Religion, Transnationalism, and the Integration of Senegalese Immigrants. Oxford University Press.
  • Abdullah, Zain. 2010. Black Mecca. The African Muslims of Harlem. Oxford University Press.